Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

A Little More on Tenure Requirements

During the tenure workshop I attended, the Associate Dean told us, “Do you see these enormous binders that contain the applicants’ tenure dossiers? Sometimes, you have to pore over every piece of paper they contain to see whether the applicant really deserves tenure. On other occasions, however, you open the binder, look at the first page of the research narrative, see a staggering number of publications, and realize that you don’t really need to read anything else in that dossier.”

I really want to be that applicant whose research narrative makes people go, “Ah, well, obviously. . . I mean, how the hell did she do that?”


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6 thoughts on “A Little More on Tenure Requirements

  1. So it doesn’t matter if the publications are short on quality as long as they are staggeringly large in number?


    • The tenure committee is not qualified to evaluate quality. This is what peer review is for.


      • I suppose it’s important to get a good number of articles in the top journals too, rather than obscure ones no one’s heard of… (I work with scientists who have to produce lots of articles too, and see what and where they publish).


        • We have to accompany each article with the information from our professional database (the MLA in my case) that demonstrates the acceptance rate of each journal. We are also advised to provide a graph showing how the acceptance rate of our articles improved over the years. I did that for my mid-point tenure and that was fun. I love graphs. 🙂


  2. “Deans can’t read, but they can count.”


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